Reuters Darrin Zammit Lupi
On Thursday, the “Platts” trading platform witnessed the sale and purchase of 7 shipments of North Sea crude, an unprecedented amount for the platform that works in estimating prices.
An oil trade source and a Platts official said, “7 shipments are a daily record for the modern era. Daily transactions usually do not exceed one or two loads of 600,000 barrels.”
Commercial sources said that today’s trading consisted of three shipments of Ecovisk crude, two of Fortis crude, and one each from “Ousberg” and “Troll” crude. They added that the Chinese “Unipec” has bought four of the cargoes.
Trade sources say that the strong increase in North Sea crude trading is due to a scarcity of supply after the sudden production cut announced by Saudi Arabia recently.
A commercial source said, “Saudi cuts have increased the demand for barrels of oil from outside the Gulf.”
Saudi Arabia pledged additional cuts of one million barrels per day in February and March as part of an agreement in which most OPEC + countries would keep production stable.
Another source said that the oil supply coming from the Middle East is undoubtedly decreasing, so the Saudi cut is likely to have a wider impact.
The North Sea is the stronghold of the historian Brent benchmark used in pricing oil deals around the world, an index valued by pricing agencies such as Platts and is based in part on the trades of Brent, Ecovesc, Osberg, Fortis and Troll crude.